So very much to be sitting with lately. Often, I don’t know where to start, where to place my attention, what needs to be done – or not done – in any given moment. The tasks, demands, questions, worries, and cries of distress – both internal and external have been debilitating at times these past few months. And often, I just can’t find the words.
The wind is ferocious today. The sun peaks in to offer her light, but the gusts are just a bit too strong to keep her soft warmth around for long. But that will change. Maybe in an hour, maybe by tonight – things will settle and soften. Inevitably to get stirred up…and soften again. What I have learned more than anything throughout this crisis is that change is constant. And we can choose (though many times when we are in survival mode, the agency we may have once felt around our choices is not always present) to be dismantled, dis-regulated and disintegrated by the change…or, we can make our best effort to remain connected to some sense of Source, even if that connection feels fragile…gossamer even.
So our task…what is being asked of us…time and time again is to feed and nourish our roots. When they are frayed. When they don’t resemble anything that once was ours. When the loss of what used to be clouds the presence of what still is. Most especially then. Roots are hearty. They’ve had to sit and push and burrow though dirt and darkness to find Source before. To reveal nourishment. They can always be tended to, in ways big and small.
Today is my 5th Mother’s Day. Sixth including when my first baby boy was only just beginning to envelop himself in the nourishment surrounding him. When we begin, we are surrounded by all we need. It pulses through and around us, blanketing us in the kind of comfort, safety and sense of knowing that only a mother’s womb can provide. The body – the Woman – inherently knows how to create – how to build: a child, a family, a home. From one small cell to the next, wiring each neural fiber to the inter-connectedness of Being. Of becoming. No words are uttered. Cognitive thought, control, foresight, analysis, preparation, planning, meaning making…none of it is warranted, or even has a place here. It’s what can’t be spoken or even named that is birthing itself. Deep, deep within. The intangible, incomprehensible soul-essence of Self…building its from-this-day-forward indestructible connection to the Source.
More than any other time in my life, this particular struggle – and a very collective one at that – has left me speechless. And like the therapist that I am, who had to grow comfortable and make space for the silence – or to “just” sit with pain…I’m welcoming it like I never have before. It doesn’t have to be named (in part because it isn’t just one thing….) or “figured out” or fixed. And I’m getting to be more OK with that. I find the spaces for myself where I can through this all…and whatever comes, comes: deep guttural cries, bewildering silence, or even a sense of simplicity and ease amongst the chaos. If there’s anything that motherhood has taught me it’s that you just can’t possibly “know” how to do it all – what is to come – or how it will all “end up.” It’s a living breathing thing, constantly changing. Constantly evolving. Ever growing. A breath, a tear, a heartbeat at a time.
When I listen to Islandic composer, Olafur Arnalds, I am often rendered speechless. Full of palpitating silence. “Nyepi” (the name of this song) means “Day of Silence,” a Balinese holiday intended to pray for the purification of humanity, earth, and the universe. A day of silence may not get us very far right now… but as we’re all called to keep going and keep navigating this ever changing (but perhaps has to be like this for some time) new terrain…We’re going to need our roots – our connection to Source – we’re going to need to nurture, nourish and strengthen them from the ground up. For me (turns out I’m an introvert….who knew?) – I need that silence to “make sense” of anything. Thank you to my husband for gifting that to me today between the cries and bruises, and joyous squeals of my precious sons. It’s kind of amazing I get to be their mama.
©Copyright 2020 Emily Lapolice/Integrative Wellness Therapies. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.